© Brian Cassey / Banda Aceh, Indonésie - 2004

I Was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky

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Opera 2019-20

John Adams - At the Théâtre de la Croix-Rousse

  • Théâtre de la Croix-Rousse
  • 1 hour 50 minutes
  • In English

A work between social drama and passion that is at the crossroads of opera and rock musical comedy, inspired by the great concept albums of pop of the 60s.

  • 20:00
  • 20:00
  • 19:30
  • 15:00
  • 20:00
  • 20:00
  • 20:00
  • 19:30
  • 15:00


In Los Angeles, seven young Americans from varied origins (Black American, Caucasian, Asian, Hispanic) see their destinies upturned during the earthquake in 1994. This catastrophe sets off a series of situations which little by little draw a fresco of contemporary society and its contradictions.

A dark, highly charged work 
As the heir to the American minimalist school of Terry Riley, Philip Glass or Steve Reich, or else of Ravel or Debussy, John Adams marked a turning point in his career with this opera. For, here, the composer forged links with the masters who had revolutionised the musical comedy : George Gershwin and Leonard Bernstein. In an attempt, like them, to capture the popular language of his times, he naturally turned towards rock and pop, in particular in his instrumentation, so as to mingle these genres with the classical. 

It is the Romanian Eugen Jebeleanu, who is entrusted this staging. He likes politics and society and likes to question notions of social norms, identity and freedom. A true fresco of urban society and its contradictions. No doubt he will be able to reveal the whole spirit of this real fresco of urban society and its contradictions.


Songplay in two acts, 1995
Libretto by June Jordan

New production
As a co-production with the Théâtre de la Croix-Rousse, Lyon and La Criée, Théâtre National de Marseille



Vincent Renaud

Stage, direction

Eugen Jebeleanu


Marine Le Vey

Décors et costumes

Velica Panduru

Ensemble instrumental

Chanteurs du Studio de l'Opéra de Lyon

My Evening